PORTSMOUTH — The Prescott Park Arts Festival will present Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" at Exeter Town Hall as its first offseason holiday production. The debut will be Friday, Dec. 9 with five shows running through Sunday, Dec. 18.

The festival, which began in 1974, has presented nearly 20,000 theater, dance and art summertime productions with donation-based admission at Portsmouth's city-owned park on the Piscataqua River.

“We’re really excited and grateful for the chance to use Exeter’s historic Town Hall to bring the magic of Prescott Park Arts Festival to Exeter,” said Ben Anderson, president of PPAF. “The idea came about organically, and the support that it’s received along the way has been so incredible.”

The production will be F. Gary Newton’s adaptation of the classic Christmas story. Newton is the founder of The Players' Ring theater in Portsmouth.

"We are honored to present Gary Newton’s version given the role and impact he had on this arts community," Anderson said.

Tickets for all performances, including two matinees, are on sale at prescottpark.org. Prices range from $10 to $25, in addition to limited VIP tickets at $40.

Adult and youth cast auditions are scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 16 from 4 to 9 p.m. with invited callbacks on Monday, Oct. 17 from 6-10 p.m. Auditions will be held in Room M213 at the University of New Hampshire's Paul Creative Arts Center in Durham. All auditions are by appointment. Email Kaitlin Deyo, production manager, at kaitlin@prescottpark.org. For information, visit prescottpark.org or call (603) 436-2848.